Bristol Road Justice group – what we do

The Bristol Road Justice group was formed as part of Cycling UK’s campaign for the rights of cyclists to use the roads safely. Fear is the main reason that people don’t cycle. Therefore, to get more cyclists on our roads, we need to make our roads safer. One of the ways to do that is by putting an end to bad driving.

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Police start a ‘Give Space, Be Safe’ initiative to tackle near misses

Avon & Somerset Police officers went to a seminar last week by West Midlands police on their award winning ‘Give Space, Be Safe’ initiative (Best Practice Education and Enforcement in the West Midlands). Since the initiative began last September in West Midlands it is credited with halving the number of incidents of ‘close passing’ reported by cyclists in Birmingham. We’re very pleased to hear that the scheme is coming to our area (Undercover police WILL target Bristol drivers who pass cyclists too close). Near misses are the main issue identified as stopping people (particularly women, children and…

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Road Justice

We have set up the Bristol Road Justice Group which has regular meetings with Avon and Somerset Police to improve policing practice in relation to cycling and to the lethal danger that comes, not from cycling, but from motor vehicles and the behaviour by a few of those currently licensed to drive them. Streets are for people. Cars, vans and lorries should be driven and parked on them with more attention to the safety and comfort of pedestrians and cyclists. Enforcement should protect and support vulnerable users.

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Police and Crime Commissioner Election 2016 – who should get your vote?

Reading the manifestos of the candidates for the position of Police and Crime Commissioner, it can be difficult to distinguish between them. All candidates want to reduce crime, build better links with communities and support victims. We’ve picked out some of the key issues which might interest cyclists and help you weigh up who to vote for. We’re also considering their responses to our PCC Space for Cycling Manifesto where we set out the key questions they need to answer about cycling. Remember that Cycling UK (used to be CTC) is plugging away nationally on the issue…

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Police Near-Miss Reporting Figures to April 2016 Released

Action to tackle near-misses is being seen as an increasingly important part of a strategy to reduce road danger. The aim is not only to reduce the rate of injury of cyclists by motorists but also to improve cyclists’ experience of the road and encourage less risk-tolerant travellers to “bike it”. Dr Rachel Aldred of the University of East London, who has led the way with her pioneering studies of the issue, recently addressed the Bristol Cycle Forum on the Near Miss Project. She pointed out that cycling was a relatively safe form of transport with riders typically experiencing…

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Manifesto for Police & Crime Commissioner Candidates – May 2016

We have produced a BCyC Manifesto for 2016 PCC Election candidates setting out key questions for the elections on May 5th. This is part of our Space for Cycling campaign. You can add your voice to the campaign by signing the petition. See also our manifesto for candidates standing for the Mayor, and as Bristol councillors. Statement from PCC statement – Mark Weston – Conservative Statement from PCC statement – Chris Briton – Green Statement from PCC statement – Sue Mountstevens – Independent Manifesto for Police and Crime Commissioner Candidates Every week two people…

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Road Justice meeting with police: 450 near miss reports, victim blaming, speeding complaints down

The Bristol Road Justice Group (BRJG) has again met with the police and representatives of the Police and Crime Commissioner. The Group was set up in 2013 to promote the agenda set by CTC’s report Road Justice: The Role of the Police. Formed by local members of CTC, Bristol Cycling Campaign and Road Peace, it was joined at this meeting by Amy Aeron-Thomas from Road Peace’s national office, Kate Cooke from BCC’s Public Health Team and Ben Barker representing the recently formed Bristol Walking Alliance. The purpose of the meeting was to review progress in implementing Avon and Somerset “Policing the Roads Strategy”. The Strategy’s aims and objectives include, amongst other things, reducing road traffic casualties, especially among vulnerable road users, and reducing concerns about road safety.

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Road Justice – tolerating the intolerable

Every week in Bristol someone is either killed or seriously injured in road traffic incidents. If this happened on a building site it would be closed down. If one or two people were killed or injured at an amusement park there would be a HSE inquiry. On our roads these figures, and the pain and loss they represent, are accepted as the result of inevitable “accidents” rather than the predictable and avoidable incidents which they are.

Why do we tolerate this?

How can it be that 9 out of 10 cases will not be prosecuted, even when the police say the driver is at fault?

Our Road Justice group has recently provided evidence to the parliamentary Transport Committee enquiry on road traffic law enforcement.

This is following the Committee’s launch of the enquiry scrutinising the government’s policies to improve road safety. One of its items of reference “The impact of road traffic law enforcement on the safety of cyclists and pedestrians” is of obvious concern to us.

Despite very short notice, the Bristol Road Justice Group has made a submission to the Committee which can be viewed below. Our evidence drew on the work we have done highlighting the lack of enforcement in relation to incidents on the Gloucester Road and in relation to injuries caused by vehicle doorings (please see our Gloucester Road and Dooring articles).

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